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One of the more exciting parts of running a business is bringing on a new team member.  A new face to add to the family, someone that’s going to provide a lot of value for your business and new ideas…well, at least you hope they would, otherwise why would you hire them? The first day that employee walks into your office, he or she is going to know very quickly how organized you are.  You need to get them onboarded quickly so that they can get past all the minutiae and start doing some real work!  If you have the process lined up well ahead of time then it is as simple as going through a list in a matter of a few hours.  In the spirit of being transparent and helping other businesses, we thought we would share with you how we onboard a new employee:

1. Forms & docs are filled out at once (1-2 hours)

    • Every federal, state, and company document that needs to be filled out should sit in a folder on Dropbox or Google Docs marked “Necessary Forms & Docs For New Hire”.  A starting point of documents:
      1. W-4
      2. I-9
      3. Intellectual property and assignment agreement
      4. Non-Disclosure agreement

2. Enroll into software (1-2 hours)

    • Have a list (in a document) of software that each new hire needs to be enrolled into. Breakdown the list of requirements by position. An accountant will need to use different products than a software developer.  Here’s an example list of software products a manager at a small business would use:
      1. Email
      2. Project management software
      3. Accounting software
      4. Time and attendance software
      5. CRM
      6. Backup data
      7. Collaboration with coworkers

3. Training on software (2-4 hours)

    • If your new employee hasn’t used one of the software products before, you’ll need to teach them the basics. We have a document with links to tutorials on how to use every product in the office. If no videos or tutorials exist, then we make our own. This is a great way to get someone accustomed to the products they will be using on a daily basis. Two takeaways here:
      • Gather training materials for all products in one document
      • Use Grovo to save yourself the hassle

4. Discussion with supervisor (1-2 hours)

    • Sit down with the supervisor on:
      • How the employee will be evaluated
      • How often the evaluations will occur
      • Set target goals for 30 days
      • Set target goals for 90 days

Lets us know in the comments how you onboard new employees.  We’re always eager to learn best practices!

  • Gbradt

    Everything communicates.  Your suggested time allocation suggests that 80% of “onboarding” has to do with forms, documents and software and 20% has to do with interacting with people.

    In our book, “Onboarding” we suggest that onboarding begins way in advance of day one and should infuse how you acquire new talent, accommodate them, assimilate them, and accelerate their progress.  It’s about relationships first and forms, documents and software second.

    George Bradt – PrimeGenesis Executive Onboarding

    • Anonymous

      George, I actually agree with you.  This was simply an onboarding process for day one.  Past day one when all the tedious work is done, you need to focus on communication.  Of course that’s a general rule of life.  That part of it can’t necessarily be taught in a blog post, it takes years of practice.  The technical parts however can be laid out quite simply in a checklist form.

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